Clemson fans are not the only ones disappointed by ESPN’s decision not to have GameDay, its popular college football pregame show, on Clemson’s campus Saturday and the designated 3:30 p.m., kickoff.
On Monday, Clemson defensive end Clelin Ferrell and NC State head coach Dave Doeren expressed their disappointments when meeting with the two programs respected media outlets.
The Tigers and the Wolfpack are the last two undefeated teams in the Atlantic Coast Conference. They are also longtime rivals and play in the same division. It’s also the last time in the college football regular season this year that two undefeated teams will face each other.
“Obviously, you would think with two undefeated teams out of the eight left that would make sense, but there are other things at play. Obviously, I am not in the conversation,” Doeren said.
The third-ranked Tigers head into Saturday game at Death Valley with a 6-0 record and 3-0 mark in the ACC, while NC State is ranked No. 15 in the latest Amway Coaches Poll and has a 5-0 overall mark and is 2-0 in conference play.
It is a puzzling move to Ferrell based on the bad blood between the two teams in recent years. NC State has played the Tigers as close as anyone the last two seasons and have matched the Tigers’ physicality better than anyone else.
Things have gotten a little chippie at times between the two rivals.
“I thought they were going to make it a night game,” Ferrell said. “I was hoping for that because I think it is time for a night game in the Valley, but they did not do it.”
The last time Clemson played a night game at Memorial Stadium was against Georgia Tech on October 28, 2017.
GameDay has not come to Clemson since the Louisville game in Week 5 of the 2016 season.
“We knew that there was a possibility we would have that opportunity and we did not get it,” Doeren said.
Instead of coming to Clemson for a big ACC Atlantic Division Showdown, which will give the winner complete control of the division, ESPN decided to take GameDay to Pullman, Wash., to highlight the No. 11 Oregon at No. 23 Washington State game in the Pac-12.
“I don’t know why it was picked that way, but we are excited to play (Clemson) regardless of where they put it,” Doeren said. “I mean, they can put it on AM radio for all I care. I can’t wait to play the game and I know our players feel the same way.”